The kids went to Glen Park Canyon today for some adventuring and a reset after a long week of work. Plus it was Halloween. Can’t ask for much concentration on Halloween.
When they got back to school, we had a small gathering for Halloween, and everyone went home tired after a day of hiking and adventuring.
Tomorrow: our new arc begins! (Drum roll please…) It’s called By Hand and we’ll be exploring all kinds of hand-related work, experiences, activities, and things you make with your hands. We have a beautiful lineup of experts, excursions, and experiments. Get ready for some handy work!
Friday is always a day of exhaustion, no matter where you go to school or where you work or where you spend your days. The kids put on a great party tonight, but that didn’t mean it wasn’t a hard day of working and trying to focus after a long week of projects.
There was some more making-up.
Preparing the bungee…
…and the coffins.
Making food for the Creepy Cinchin (Kitchen).
Helping Kristie make hot lunch.
Finagling the game station.
Kristie’s hot lunch! It was incredible.
Lola says, “I’m the old lady from the town who knows everything.”
When the party started, the kids led their parents and other grown-ups through the living exhibits of the Brightworks Halloween.
Past the graveyard…
And the guillotine…
Through the spider cave…
To being scared by the Connor-sized spider…
And creepy children in the haunted pumpkin patch.
…then becoming zombie-fied.
And maybe grabbing something to eat on the way.
…before playing eye-tossing and spinning games.
Zombies come to life in the graveyard!
What a great night.
I think everyone’s really excited to see what this little Experiment can do for the kids and the structure of the school in general. Working in small groups has always been Gever’s goal in the 6:1 student-teacher ratio, and the opportunity to explore that this week will, I know, lead to better practices when the kids work on their projects. We, the staff and the kids, are all so lucky to be able to learn on-the-job at this school – a failure-positive place where we can always take a step back and change our behavior to fit the situation. It’s all an experiment, and one day we could get it right… but that just means we’ve stopped thinking and have more work to do!
Happy pre-Halloween, and thanks to those who were able to make it to the school tonight! It’s always a treat to see how much we have support in the world.
Collaboration in groups of three has been phenomenal this week! The hard work continued as the day zipped by.
More pumpkin carving…
Testing out the eyeball toss.
Riffing on the Stylophone.
Setting up the bungee rig.
Til tomorrow, with a creepy bow.
The Halloween scenes really started coming together today!
Making mashed potato ghosts.
Drawing out the design for a bungee harness.
The spiderweb cave.
Telling the story of the journey through the creepy haunted house.
Building the guillotine.
Collecting more leaves for the graveyard.
Testing out the guillotine.
Get ready for Friday! All are welcome to join us for an evening of fun and spooks at our school from 5pm – 7pm. Come on by!
The kids created prototypes today for their Halloween extravaganza.
But first, they needed some practice in walking like zombies.
Laying the foundation for the graveyard scene.
Carving apples to prepare for carving the real-deal pumpkins.
Setting the scene: collecting leaves from the street for the graveyard.
Making a body.
Spider Cave, complete with webs.
A trip to Scrap!
Fake blood: corn syrup, cocoa powder, and red food coloring. They certainly fooled me.
A mystery plan, in the works!
Today the kids split up into groups of three to begin planning for the Halloween extravaganza slated for Friday. Their challenge? They must work together to think up and create the creepiest, spookiest Halloween scene they can devise.
At snack time, Peter showed everyone his declaration for the year: creating prosciutto. He explained the ball joints in a pig’s leg and showed the kids different pieces of the leg. Then the meat went in the salt bin for a month!
The rest of the day was spent working on prototypes for the Halloween scenes.
The short list of supplies.
Stay tuned for progress updates all week!
This Friday, our school experienced its first real excursion hiccup. We spent the afternoon in the library reading, picking books, and doing a bit of scary story research for our upcoming Halloween party.
After two hours wandering the halls of the Teen and Children sections at the library, it was time to head home. Our timing, it seemed, was perfect: a roughly 20 minute journey home starting at 3:05pm. We’d even have time for a quick end of day circle.
Clipper cards ready, we all hopped on the bus. Confident we where looking for our standard 18th street stop, we embraced the usual shenanigans of the bus ride – story telling, day sharing, brotherly rough housing, and backpack ruffling. A bell ding alerted us that we were coming up on the 17th street stop and the warning to students went out: “The next stop, at 18th street, is ours.”
With bags closed and students ready, we flew by the 18th Street stop. 19th Street went whizzing by. 20th, 21st, 22nd and 23rd follow suit. Turns out that the 9 and the 9L are very different buses.
We got off the bus and shared with the kids the fantastic nature of our bus stop failure. Taking the opportunity to model calm and reasonable problem-solving, Mackenzie and I plotted a new path home and called Justine so she could keep parents in the loop. We were to walk over to Bryant and take the trusty 27. Looking back, I now realize we missed an opportunity to ask our kids to participate in generating a solution.
The 27 seemed like it was going to take far too long, so we opted to try and beat it by walking back to school. We split into two groups: the runners (hell-bent on beating the bus home) and the walkers (less-bent but still hoping to beat the bus home). Some parents met us along the way to keep after-school appointments but most others waited as we and the kids added an additional 20 minutes to our journey home. Our day came to an end with varying levels of sweatiness and similar levels of accomplishment and adventure.